Background/aims: To evaluate diurnal variations in optic nerve head (ONH) vessel density assessed by optical coherence tomography angiography (OCT-A) in healthy subjects, ocular hypertension (OHT), and open-angle glaucoma (OAG) patients. Methods: Forty subjects (OAG, 21; OHT, 6; healthy, 13) were assessed for vessel density percentage (VD%) and flow index in the ONH (NH VD%, NH index), and in the radial peripapillary capillary layer (RPC VD%, RPC index) at 9:00, 11:00, 14:00, 16:00, and 18:00 on a single day. Repeated measures ANOVAs were used to test for changes in the parameters measured at multiple time points. Results: All OCT-A parameters analyzed at the different time points were statistically lower in the OAG patients compared to both the OHT and healthy groups (p < 0.05). In the OAG group, the NH index, RPC index, NH VD%, and RPC VD% were statistically lower at 18:00 compared to 14:00, and the RPC VD% was statistically lower at 9:00 than 14:00. In the OHT group, the RPC index was statistically lower at 9:00 than 11:00. In the healthy group, the NH VD% and RPC VD% were statistically lower at 16:00 than 18:00, and the RPC index was statistically lower at 9:00 than 11:00. No other statistically significant difference was found in none of the three groups comparing any other time point (p > 0.05). Conclusion: In healthy subjects, OHT and OAG patients, the variations in the OCT-A derived parameters were relatively small. These results suggest that in the clinical practice the OCT-A assessment can be performed independently of the time of the day, contrasting IOP evaluation.
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